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OpenMarket: Trade and International

  • Senate Passes USMCA, Sets Bad Precedent for Future Agreements with China, UK, EU

    January 16, 2020
    The USMCA trade agreement passed the Senate today. USMCA is valuable damage control. Three years of unpredictable tariff increases, threats of increases, and diplomatic tensions will hopefully have more stability going forward. Unfortunately, USMCA is filled with trade-unrelated provisions and giveaways to business, labor, and environmental interests. Trade agreements should stick to trade issues.
  • Phase One Trade Agreement with China: Tariff Stability, at the Cost of Managed Trade

    January 15, 2020
    Phase One of a trade deal with China has enormous value as damage control against further tariffs, but it comes at a cost. The Trump administration has more than doubled total U.S. tariffs in its first three years, and other countries, including China, have responded in kind. Phase One’s signing hopefully marks an end to a tariff-first trade policy and its unpredictable implementation. But a ceasefire is not a victory. Massive tariffs put in place less than two years ago will remain in place, and risk becoming normalized.
  • Brexit Update: Nigel Ashford and Iain Murray Offer Analysis

    January 10, 2020
    With the vote yesterday in the House of Commons to approve Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan for separating the United Kingdom from the European Union, it seems that after a very long road, Brexit will actually happen on January 31.
  • UN Climate Conference in Madrid Fails to Set Rules for Carbon Trading Market   

    December 20, 2019
    The twenty-fifth Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP-25) was supposed to wrap up one issue remaining from last year’s COP-24 on implementing the Paris climate treaty—setting up the rules for an international greenhouse gas emissions trading market. 
  • Dutch Supreme Court Upholds Climate Lawsuit against Government

    December 20, 2019
    The Dutch Supreme Court on December 20th rejected an appeal by the Dutch government to overturn an appellate court’s October 2018 decision to uphold a lower court’s June 2015 decision requiring the government to cut Holland’s carbon dioxide emissions at least 25 percent below 1990 levels by 2020.
  • Phase One of a China-U.S. Trade Agreement and the Ratchet Effect

    December 13, 2019
    As of Friday, December 13th, the U.S. and Chinese governments have agreed in principle to phase one of a trade agreement. The Chinese government will purchase more U.S. agricultural products, and according to The Wall Street Journal, “Mr. Wang [China’s Vice Minister of Commerce] said that the agreement would cover a range of contentious issues, including agriculture, intellectual property protection, technology transfer and liberalization of the financial sector, without elaborating.”
  • Competitive Enterprise Institute Opposes USMCA Trade Agreement

    December 12, 2019
    The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) today announced its opposition to the USMCA trade agreement between the United States, Mexico, and Canada because the updated agreement sets dangerous precedents for future policy. 
  • Two New Studies on Economics of Trade

    November 11, 2019
    Philip Thompson and Lorenzo Montanari have compiled a Trade Barrier Index, just released by the Property Rights Alliance. The U.S. currently ranks 54th out of 86 countries. Singapore and Hong Kong rank 1st and 2nd, while India and China bring up the rear at 85th and 86th, respectively.
  • Trump Administration Begins Withdrawal from Paris Climate Treaty

    November 8, 2019
    Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on November 4th that, “Today the United States began the process to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. Per the terms of the Agreement, the United States submitted formal notification of its withdrawal to the United Nations. The withdrawal will take effect one year from delivery of the notification.”
  • Trade Developments on Export-Import Bank and NAFTA/USMCA

    November 7, 2019
    America’s trade policy landscape has some big events on the horizon. The House of Representatives will vote next week on Rep. Maxine Waters’ (D-CA) Export-Import Bank reauthorization bill. The Trump administration has signaled opposition to it, making it unlikely to become law. The administration favors Ex-Im renewal, but likely wants it to be more bellicose towards China.

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